His Excellency the Minister of Finance and Acting Minister of Economy and Planning, Mr. Mohammed Al-Jadaan participated, on Wednesday, January 27, on the ongoing conference of the 4th edition of the Future Investment Initiative (FII) that takes place (January 27-28). FII is held this year under the theme of "The Neo-Renaissance" to address the imperative of the future of healthcare, education, ESG for responsible investment, as well as the economic and growth outlook for the year ahead.
Alongside His Excellency, The panel discussion "Regional Resilience: Leaning Into Economic Diversification" was attended by H.E Shaikh Salman bin Khalifa Al Khalifa, Minister of Finance and National Economy, Bahrain; Thomas J. Barrack, Executive Chairman, Colony Capital, USA and Jason Greenblatt, Founder and CEO of Abraham Venture, USA, and moderated by Fatima Daoui, Senior Presenter and Executive Producer at Al Arabiya.
During the panel discussion, Al-Jadaan discussed how there was serious change happening throughout the GCC in a healthy and complimentary way as a block. Saudi Arabia started V2030 with very clear targets, there was significant investment in technology and infrastructure as well as law and regulatory changes to make it easier to do business and improve data and transparency, for example in how the budget was constructed and spent. He added that 2020 was exceptionally testing year for the world and Saudi Arabia. The pandemic has “tried and tested" the vision and that investments proved its flexibility by swiftly shifting from physical to virtual environment. It also allowed the diversification of the economy to create more revenues, which can be invested in better services for the people. This is all powered by the private sector and we win if they win as they provide jobs for the Saudi people.
Al-Jadaan confirmed that Saudi Arabia has significant investment opportunities in new and conventional sectors such as renewable energy, where we are not only installing but also investing in. The government will also accelerate the privatisation program by 100% in 2021, providing many opportunities for investors in such areas as water, healthcare, education and wastewater treatment. In addition, Al-Jadaan commented on the reform of the capital markets both on the equity and the debt side showing both strong growth by 200% over 2020 and expected to grow more in 2021.
The Future Investment Initiative (FII) is an annual investment forum held in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, to discuss trends in the world economy and investment environment. It is hosted by the Public Investment Fund of Saudi Arabia (PIF).